Generally, a light green colour, the peridot is a unique birthstone known for its formation under extreme conditions in either the Earth’s mantle or in meteorites. It’s known as the ‘evening emerald’ because its sparkling green hue looks striking at any time of day.

Most of the world’s peridot supply comes from the San Carlos Reservation in Arizona. If you want to learn more about these sparkling green gems, read on for information about the peridot’s history, types and its association with the birth month of August.

 

What Is A Peridot?

A peridot’s green colour is dependent on the iron contents within its structure – and in fact, it’s one of few gemstones that forms only in one colour: green. Most stones are more of a yellowish-green, and the finest hue is a pure green without any hints of yellow or brown tints.

The peridot is one of two gems (the other is a diamond) that is not formed in the Earth’s crust, rather in molten rock in the upper mantle that is brought to the surface by earthquakes or volcanoes.

While the majority of peridots are found within the Earth (as mentioned above), it is also a possibility for a peridot to arrive to Earth via meteorite. Dubbed a ‘pallasitic peridot’, the most common occurrence of this is traced to the Indonesian Jeppara meteorite, but is also prevalent in the Brenham, Fukang and Imilac meteorites.

The largest peridot ever found weighs 319 carats and is displayed at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington DC. In popular culture, you’ll often find peridot gems worn by British royals, including the Duchess of Cambridge, Kate, and the Duchess of Sussex, Meagan.

 

History of Peridots

The first existence of peridot was recorded by Pliny the Edler (23-79 AD) on a small island off the coast of Egypt. Peridots were popular amongst the Egyptian Pharaohs, and today, the peridot is the national gem of Egypt. It’s even believed that some of Cleopatra’s famous emeralds were actually peridots. Ancient Egyptians have long prized the peridot for its protective powers and perceived gifts of inner radiance, growth and spiritual purpose.

Myanmar is another rich source of peridots. The northern slope of mountainous region Kyaukpon showcases loose peridot crystals in crevices. These specific peridots are renowned for their deep colour and sublime transparency.

Peridots are also connected to Hawaiian culture, as the gems are thought to be the tears of volcano goddess Pele.

In medieval Europe, the peridot was used as a protector; shielding the owner from evil spirits. It appeared in priests’ jewellery, and later in chalices and among churches in medieval Europe.

 

What Are the Different Varieties of The Peridot Gemstone?

Other common varieties of the peridot gemstone are chrysolites and olivines. Chrysolite refers to peridots that are light to medium yellow-greenish in hue, and olivine refers to darker yellow-green to brownish-green stones.

 

How Did Peridots Become the Birthstones for August?

There are actually three birthstones associated with the month of August: peridot, spinel and sardonyx. The peridot has been the birthstone for August since 1900, however, the tradition of birthstone selection harkens back to the Breastplate of Aaron as outlined in the Bible’s book of Exodus. The Breastplate was adorned with twelve gemstones that represented the tribes of Israel at the time – and based on this model, the modern birthstone list was created. It has since been defined by the National Association of Jewellers from the United States; affirming the peridot’s assignment to the birth month of August.

As well as being ascribed as one of August’s birthstones, peridot is the gem gifted to celebrate a 16th wedding anniversary.

peridot allgem jewellers

What Jewellery Pieces Does This August Birthstones Go Best With?

Peridot gems are cut in a wide variety of shapes, so they are an extremely versatile gem to work with when it comes to jewellery setting.

Peridot gems are particularly popular settings for rings, earrings, bracelets and pendants.  Peridot gemstones have been used in jewellery for centuries as they are extremely eye-catching and easy to distinguish because of its vibrant green colour. Peridots are extremely versatile, and they look stunning against any metal. For a classic, traditional look, rose gold or yellow gold are great options. If you’d prefer an edgier style, silver-coloured settings are the way to go.

Peridot rings are an extremely popular option when it comes to selecting peridot jewellery. A small peridot stone in a delicate ring setting is a stunning accompaniment to any outfit – or if you’d rather make more of a statement, a peridot cocktail ring is particularly striking. Peridot engagement rings are another great option – just remember that peridot has a very distinct colour, so your ring will be a clear stand-out and might not match colours of other jewellery or clothing pieces.

Peridots can be cut into round, princess, oval, emerald, radiant, cushion, heart and marquise styles. It can be a tricky gemstone to cut because it is prone to cracking, so be sure to select an expert jeweller to cut your peridot for you.

 

How To Keep Your Peridot Jewellery In Good Condition

Peridots are a great gemstone for daily wear, but it’s essential to take good care of them to maintain lustre and polish.

The best way to preserve your peridot jewellery is with warm soapy water. Drastic temperature changes can damage the gemstone, so be sure to keep the temperature of your water lukewarm and consistent. After cleaning, store your peridot jewellery piece in a cloth to keep it free from dust.

Whether it’s a peridot ring, pair of earrings or pendant, look no further than the expert team at Perth’s Allgem Jewellers. Conveniently located in Hay Street Mall in the CBD, Allgem’s wide range of gemstone jewellery pieces, including a range of stunning peridot pieces, is sure to suit all design preferences. Contact our professional master jewellers or visit our showroom to take a look at our wide range of luxurious gemstone jewellery.

Those born in June are particularly fortunate when it comes to gems – as they call pearls, alexandrites and moonstones the birthstones of their birthday month. Each of these precious gems have their own features, histories and deposit locations across the globe.

So without further ado, here’s the lowdown on pearls, alexandrites and moonstones – the shared birthstones for the month of June.

 

What is a Pearl?

pearlsPearl is a precious gemstone believed to bring its wearer peace, confidence and relaxation. Pearls are the only gemstones that come from a living creature – as molluscs such as mussels and oysters have produced these jewels for centuries. Pearls have been long associated with purity, and as such, pearls make for popular wedding gifts.

The pearl was also thought to have beneficial and healing properties. In Asia, pearls were believed to alleviate indigestion – and some 19th century Arab physicians even maintained that powder from pearls could improve eyesight and ease depression.

Pearls are renowned for their exquisite beauty – and in particular, their lustre. Types of pearls include saltwater, freshwater, natural and cultured. All pearl types can be differentiated by their unique features, including colour, size and lustre. All three of these factors influence the value and pricing of the gem.

History of Pearls

Pearls are the world’s oldest gem. Fragments of pearl jewellery have been found in the sarcophagus of a Persian princess dating back to 420 BC, which is now displayed at the Louvre in Paris.

Pearls have also been an important trade commodity since Roman times – with the discovery of pearls in Central and South America in the 15th and 16th century heralding the so-called ‘Pearl Age’. Today, natural pearls are among the rarest of gems that are infrequently found in the seas off Bahrain and Australia.

 

What is an Alexandrite?

alexandriteAn alexandrite is an extremely rare, colour-changing variety of the mineral chrysoberyl. This gemstone was originally discovered in Russia’s Ural Mountians in the 1830s, and can now be found in Brazil and Sri Lanka. This gem, however, is extremely difficult to find – which explains why it’s one of the most valuable coloured gemstones in the world.

Colour-changing alexandrite is often dubbed as ‘nature’s magic trick’. Its metamorphosis phenomenon is termed ‘Pleochroism’ – as under such light, the stone turns reddish. The alexandrite stone encourages romance, and is said to remind the wearer of their purpose and origin in life. Along with being a birthstone for June, alexandrites are commonly gifted on 55th wedding anniversaries.

History of Alexandrites

The alexandrite gem was named after the young Alexander II, as its red and green colours mirrored the national military colours of imperial Russia. As mentioned above, the first alexandrite was discovered in Russia’s Ural Mountains in 1834, and when the discoverer (French mineralist Nils Gustaf Nordenskiold) found it, he believed it was an emerald because of its brilliant green and ruby hues.

 

What is a Moonstone?

moonstoneAs part of the feldspar mineral group, the moonstone gem exists in a variety of extremely thin layers. The moonstone is characterised by its intriguing adularescene effect, which gives the gem an almost hypnotic and transparent effect. Hindu mythology claims that the moonstone gem is made of solidified moonbeams. This gem is often associated with love and passion – and is also believed to bring the wearer great luck and fortune.

Moonstones can be found in a variety of locations across the globe, including India, Brazil, Myanmar, Mexico, Germany and Sri Lanka. Along with being one of three birthstones for June, moonstones are commonly gifted on a 13th wedding anniversary.

History of Moonstones

Both Roman and Greek cultures associated moonstones with the gods. In Rome, this referred to the goddess Luna, and in Greece, it was relevant for the goddesses Artemis, Hectate and Selene. In later years, moonstones were incredibly popular gemstones for designers of the Art Noveau movement (such as Rene Lalique and Louis Comfort Tiffany), and also enjoyed a heyday during the 1960s ‘flower child’ movement, and again in the 1990s New Age movement.

 

How did Pearls, Alexandrites and Moonstones become the birthstones for June?

If you were born in June, you’re lucky enough to have three birthstones assigned to your birth month. Pearl is usually the primary June birthstone, but the option for choice within these three gemstones is what makes those born in June so fortunate.

The idea of a calendar year of gemstones is thought to be an ancient one, with scholars tracing it back to the Breastplate of Aaron as described in the Bible’s book of Exodus. The breastplate was adorned with twelve gemstones that represented the tribes of Israel. The modern birthstone list was then created, and has remained unchanged since 1912. It was defined by the National Association of Jewellers from the United States, and was designed to align with the zodiac signs and the months of the calendar year.

 

What jewellery pieces do these June birthstones go best with?

Pearls are an extremely popular gemstone for jewellery settings. Examples of types of pearl jewellery are vast, and stretch to pendants, bangles, earrings, brooches, rings, bracelets and drop necklaces. Almost all pearl jewellery created today is made using pearls that have been cultivated and farmed.

The most common jewellery types for the precious alexandrite gemstone are pendants, rings and earrings.

Moonstones are also popular gemstones for jewellery, and are often set in rings, stud earrings, drop necklaces, pendants, drop earrings and bracelets.

According to Indian mythology, the name emerald was first translated from Sanskrit as “marakata”, meaning “the green of growing things”. Emeralds traditionally signify hope, prosperity, growth and peace, and are classified as ‘Type III’ gemstones with natural flaws that are often praised for their uniqueness and beauty.

Here’s a round-up of the history, qualities, and maintenance required for May’s gemstone, the emerald.

What is an Emerald?

Classified as ‘Type III’ gems, emeralds are one of the rarest gemstones and radiate a vivid green hue. In fact, emeralds are so prized that a fine emerald may be up to three times as valuable as a diamond. Flawless emeralds in fact, are some of the rarest and most valuable gemstones that are only found in small sizes.

The emerald gemstone belongs to the beryl family. Beryl is a mineral that contains a lot of beryllium, which is an extremely rare metal which mainly occurs in granite and metamorphic rocks. Another variety of gem beryl is the aquamarine gemstone.

Though emeralds are not as hard as diamonds, they last a long time. They range in colour from light to dark green – a shade that is said to represent new life and the promise of springtime. Occasionally, trace amounts of iron can tint an emerald bluish or yellowish, depending on its oxidation state.

Emeralds are predominantly found in Brazil, Colombia, Afghanistan and Zambia. There are also abundant emerald deposits in Australia, Pakistan and Russia – but the source of the world’s finest emeralds are in Colombia. They are found in metamorphic, igneous and sedimentary rocks.

The most famous mining district in Colombia is Muzo. With a hot, humid climate with tons of rainfall, emerald crystals are plentiful in calcite deposits in shale. Within this area, crystals are also found in veins containing albite, quartz and pyrite.

The History of Emeralds

The history of emeralds spans thousands of years. They were sold in ancient markets in Europe and Asia up to 6,000 years ago, and even Aristotle mentioned the emerald in his writings – noting that the stone can improve an individual’s status. In Greek mythology, Hermes gifted a giant emerald for Aphrodite, and in the Hebrew tradition, an emerald was one of four precious stones given to Solomon.

Emeralds are also known for their spiritual properties, and were praised by the Chaldeans for their perceived divine nature. It was also stated that Roman emperor Nero viewed gladiator fights through the lens of an emerald as he believed it soothed him.

Over the years, emeralds have featured in some of the world’s most iconic pieces of jewellery. The “Crown of the Andes” is one, and the Chalk Emerald necklace worn by the Maharani of Baroda is another. Napoleon’s gift to his daughter upon her marriage to the Grand Duke of Baden was an emerald and diamond parure jewellery set.

Royal families across the globe were also keen adopters of the emerald into their pieces of jewellery. Cleopatra was famous for her love of the emerald, and the precious stone was also a part of crown jewels in Russia, Iran and India. Alongside royals, celebrities were also a fan of this precious stone; Elizabeth Taylor notably had a large collection of emerald brooches and necklaces.

How Did Emeralds Become the Birthstone for May?

If you were born in May, you’re lucky enough not only to inherit the emerald as your birthstone, but to share this precious gemstone with some formidable women in history, including Queen Victoria, who received both a symbolic snake emerald wedding ring, and a tiara embedded with emeralds – which is now on display at Kensington Palace. Both were gifted to her by Prince Albert.

As far as the emerald’s significance to the month of May, experts believe the concept of monthly birthstones can be traced back to Biblical times. In Exodus 28, Moses directs a breastplate to be created for Aaron, High Priest of the Hebrews. The breastplate would contain twelve precious gemstones, indicating Israel’s twelve tribes. Later, these stones were linked to the twelve zodiac signs, and eventually to the months of the calendar year.

What Jewellery Pieces Do Emeralds Go Best With?

When it comes to jewellery, diamonds are cut in a fashion that is known as an ‘emerald cut’. This cut was originally developed to optimise the gemstones’ striking green colour, rather than their brilliance.

Emeralds are suitable stones for all types of jewellery, but are particularly popular when set in rings, necklaces, bracelets and earrings. However, as emeralds are quite fragile, they aren’t recommended for setting within engagement rings.

As far as styles go, emeralds are commonly found in drop earrings, stud earrings, drop necklaces, classic rings and trilogy rings.

Emerald Maintenance

As emeralds are such precious gemstones, it’s important to clean them at least three times a week with a soft cloth. Emeralds can’t withstand chemical cleaning, so it’s best to be proactive with cleaning instead of waiting for dirt build-up to appear.

It’s also important to avoid exposing your emerald to extreme temperatures. Even continuous exposure to sunlight can be damaging, so take care when wearing and cleaning jewellery pieces with emeralds.

When it comes to cleaning emerald rings, it’s a good idea to soak them in mildly warm water with a very mild detergent to revive the sparkle of your ring. Using a soft brush such as a toothbrush is also a good idea to reach the ring’s crevices.

Diamonds are one of the most intriguing gemstones on the planet. Derived from the Greek word ‘adamas’ which means ‘unconquerable’, the diamond is the hardest of all precious stones and was believed to have been discovered nearly 3,000 years ago in India.

 

Here’s everything you need to know about April’s precious birthstone, the diamond.

 

What Is A Diamond?

 

A diamond is a native crystalline carbon that is usually colourless, and is highly valued as a precious stone. Diamonds are commonly assessed by the four C’s: carat, clarity, colour and cut.

  • Carat

Diamonds are sold by the carat – and as the carat size increases, the diamond’s price drastically increases. This is because the larger a diamond is, the rarer it is. It’s a good idea to view a diamond carat chart to determine the weight of gem that sits within your budget.

  • Clarity

As they are formed under pressure and heat at the earth’s core, almost every diamond will contain some form of visual imperfection. As such, a diamond’s clarity refers to the degree to which these blemishes are present on its surface.

  • Colour

Though most diamonds appear colourless, some of these gems can reflect yellow, white or even pink hues. Colour is easier to deduce in larger diamonds.

  • Cut

A diamond’s cut refers to its proportions, polish and symmetry. The most popular diamond cut is the modern round brilliant, but fancy cuts (which come in a variety of shapes) are also popular choices. A diamond’s cut can only be correctly evaluated and analysed by trained jewel graders.

 

Though diamonds were first discovered in India, today 49% of natural diamonds originate from central and southern Africa. Significant sources for diamonds have also been discovered in Russia, Canada, Australia and Brazil. They are mined through the use of volcanic pipes which bring the deep diamond crystals from deep in the earth’s core.

 

The History Of Diamonds

As mentioned above, the diamond’s name is derived from the Greek word ‘adamas’ which translates to ‘unconquerable’. In Greek mythology, diamonds were believed to be tears of the gods. Conversely, in Roman mythology, it was believed that Cupid’s arrow of love was tipped with diamonds.

 

As the times progressed, diamonds became sought after for a range of different purposes. During the Dark Ages, diamonds were believed to have medicinal purposes, and during the Middle Ages, diamonds were renowned for being an item of commercial value – which provides a clearer link to the prevalence of diamonds in our society today.

 

As far as the physical location of the earliest diamonds, they were initially discovered in India in 4th century BC, with the majority of these precious gemstones transported along the Silk Road trade network between India and China. Until the 18th century, India was believed to be the only source of diamonds in the world.

 

How Did Diamonds Become The Birthstone For April?

Scholars can trace a gemstone-defined calendar back to the Breastplate of Aaron as described in the Bible’s book of Exodus. The Breastplate was adorned with twelve gemstones that represented the tribes of Israel at the time – and based on this model, the modern birthstone list was created in 1912. It has since been defined by the National Association of Jewellers from the United States.

 

For those born in April, wearing a diamond is said to make you happier in your relationships, and more likely to find and build strength from within. Diamonds are also associated with the benefits of mental clarity and balance.

 

In addition to being the April birthstone, the diamond gemstone is also a gift of choice for 60th and 75th wedding anniversaries.

 

What Jewellery Pieces Do Diamonds Go Best With?

A diamond’s hardness and high reflection of light makes it a useful gem for jewellery making.

The first diamond engagement ring was given in 1477 by Archduke Maximilan of Austria, who presented it to Mary of Burgundy. Engagement rings are arguably one of the most popular types of jewellery for diamond settings, and can come in a variety of styles – including antique, minimalist, halo, three-stone, rose-gold or lab-grown. They say “diamonds are forever” – so whichever style you choose, you’re sure to have a classic and timeless piece of jewellery on your hands.

 

Another recent diamond trend has appeared in the form of stackable rings. Whether it’s an engagement ring and wedding band, or simply two diamond rings worn together, this layering effect is completely customisable and allows each diamond to complement the other.

 

One of the most popular metals for diamond settings is platinum, because of its rarity, purity, density and strength. Other popular settings for diamond jewellery include fold, palladium and silver – with the latter being the most cost-efficient. Other affordable options include titanium and tungsten.

 

Diamond Maintenance

The best way to clean a piece of jewellery with a diamond setting is to create a solution with warm water and dishwashing soap. After soaking the ring for 30 to 40 minutes, use a soft toothbrush to gently clean the stone, and then re-rinse the jewellery under warm running water.

 

Using chlorine or other harsh chemicals can damage your piece of jewellery, so be sure to use a low concentration of soap in your mixture, and to thoroughly rinse the piece after cleaning to remove any excess soap.

 

It’s also a good idea to have your piece of jewellery cleaned professionally at least once a year for longevity. A professional jeweller will have all necessary equipment and skills to ensure your jewellery remains at its highest quality and retains its shine.

 

Whether it’s a diamond necklace, pendant, earring, bracelet or engagement ring, look no further than the expert team at Perth’s Allgem Jewellers. Conveniently located in Hay Street Mall in the CBD, Allgem’s wide range of gemstone jewellery pieces, including a range of diamond pieces, is sure to suit all design preferences.

 

Contact our professional master jewellers or visit our showroom to take a look at our wide range of luxurious gemstone jewellery.

It comes as no surprise that aquamarine is known as the gemstone of the sea. Derived from the Latin words ‘aqua’ and ‘mare’, aquamarine signifies the joining of water and sea. Aquamarine is the birthstone for those born in March and is also the gem associated with 19-year wedding anniversaries.

Here’s the lowdown on the stunning aquamarine gemstone.

 

What Is an Aquamarine?

Formed from the mineral species of ‘beryl’, aquamarines are semi-precious gems of the beryl family that are renowned for being both durable and pure. With a strong clarity and less natural inclusions than other gemstone varieties, aquamarine’s composition of beryl, when combined with other minerals, creates a classic baby blue colour – which is the colour most commonly associated with the gemstone. Rarer aquamarine stones can also be found in pink and greenish hues.

The colour of aquamarines can range from sea-foam green, to teal, to blue-green. However, with aquamarines, the darker the hue, the more expensive the stone. Deeper blue gemstones are more expensive, and this is therefore proven with the aquamarine. It’s also noted that the best aquamarine stones contain some slightly green hues that are intertwined with a base, deep blue colour.

Aquamarines are most commonly found in Brazil, Africa, Asia and in Colorado’s Rocky Mountains – where it is the state of Colorado’s gemstone. It usually occurs in granite pegmatites, and it commonly associated with quartz, muscovite and topaz.

A fun fact about aquamarines is that some of the world’s most renowned aquamarines currently belong to the reigning Queen of England. At her coronation in 1953, she was gifted an aquamarine necklace with matching earrings by the president of Brazil. After she received it, she had a matching bracelet, tiara and brooch made as she loved the pieces so much.

 

The History of Aquamarine Stones

There are numerous myths and legends about the aquamarine gemstone. The Romans believed the stone absorbs the feeling of young love, whereas the Greeks knew the aquamarine as a sailor’s gem, ensuring a safe and prosperous passage when travelling in rough seas. Conversely, in Medieval times, the aquamarine stone was thought to awaken romance between married couples, and the Egyptians and Hebrews saw the aquamarine as a symbol of everlasting youth.

Jewellery and protective amulets using aquamarine stones have been dated back as far as 500 BC, but the largest gem-quality aquamarine ever recorded was found in Brazil in 1910, weighing over 110 kilograms. Additionally, the largest faceted aquamarine in the world, the Dom Pedro Aquamarine, is currently on display at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History.

How Did Aquamarines Become the Birthstone for March?

The idea of a calendar year of gemstones is thought to be an ancient one, with scholars tracing it back to the Breastplate of Aaron as described in the Bible’s book of Exodus. The Breastplate was a special garment set with twelve gemstones that represented the tribes of Israel at the time. Based on this model, the modern birthstone list was created and has remained unchanged since 1912. It was defined by the National Association of Jewellers from the United States and was designed to similarly align with the zodiac signs and the birth-months of those within each sign.

Many of those who have March birthdays also have the zodiac sign of Pisces, which shares properties with the aquamarine stone in terms of water or the sea.

 

Other Types of Beryl Stones

As the mineral beryl contains many varieties, the aquamarine stone effectively has five ‘brothers and sisters’. Each type is recognised because of its distinctive colour, and include aquamarine, bixbite, goshenite, emerald, heliodor and morganite.

Bixbite is extremely rare and receives a bright red colour from its beryl component. In contrast, emerald is beryl’s green and most precious variety, goshenite is colourless beryl, heliodor covers a variety of earth tones of beryl, and morganite is also known as ‘pink beryl’.

 

What Jewellery Pieces Do Aquamarines Go Best With?

Aquamarine stones have a number of favourable attributes for jewellery, namely due to their durability and availability. Rated 7.8 on the Mohs hardness scale, aquamarine is soft enough to accommodate a range of gemstone cutting shapes, styles and techniques. With regards to jewellery, aquamarine stones first rose to popularity in the 1940s when there was a large availability of the gem. Since then, jewellers all over the world have set aquamarine stones in rings, necklaces and earrings.

Aquamarines were regarding the ‘ring trend’ of 2019, particularly in a halo-setting style. By surrounding the aquamarine gemstone in a ring of white diamonds, the gemstone is highlighted and has the chance to make a real statement. And while the classic diamond engagement ring will remain a timeless and classic option, there has certainly been a rise in more non-traditional rings featuring a variety of gemstones and quirky settings.

As far as setting and metal are concerned, rose gold is a great pairing with aquamarine. It can also be paired effectively with traditional gold and silver and suits a number of settings due to its high clarity and minimal invasion from veins or other shades and hues.

Although aquamarine is a very durable gemstone, you will still need to take care to ensure its maintenance. To care for your aquamarine jewellery, soak it in warm soapy water and buff the metal gently with a soft cloth to dry. Aquamarine jewellery can also withstand light exposure, but it’s best to avoid exposing them to extreme heat.

Whether it’s an aquamarine necklace, pendant, earring, bracelet or engagement ring, look no further than the expert team at Perth’s Allgem Jewellers. Conveniently located in Hay Street Mall in the CBD, Allgem’s wide range of gemstone jewellery pieces, including a range of aquamarine pieces, is sure to suit all design preferences. Contact our professional master jewellers or visit our showroom to take a look at our wide range of luxurious gemstone jewellery.

The word ‘amethyst’ has a Greek origin and refers to ‘sobriety’ – guiding its owner into a serious mindset. The amethyst stone not only has a rich historical background but is also a stunning piece of jewellery tied to the month of February in the birthstone calendar year.

Here’s a few key facts you’ll need to know before purchasing an amethyst or a piece of jewellery with an amethyst within it.

 

What Is an Amethyst?

Amethysts are members of the quartz family and are traditionally considered one of the most valuable gemstones among diamonds, rubies, emeralds and a few choice others. In terms of value, amethyst collectors search for depth of colour – including the possibility of red flashes if they are cut conventionally.

Value for amethysts depends almost entirely on colour. The ideal colour of an amethyst is called ‘Deep Siberian’ and is extremely rare, but there are also green quartz varieties that are called green amethysts. Light-coloured amethysts are enjoying a resurgence in popularity as of late, with the pinkish, lighter shades titled ‘Rose de France’.

Deposits of amethyst can still be found in the vicinities of Greece, Italy, North Africa, Brazil and the Middle East, and the origin of rich purple amethysts can be traced back to royalty, who wore them as a symbol of heightened status. Today, as is the case with other gemstone varieties, amethyst can be easily produced in laboratories.

 

The History of Amethyst Stones

In Greek mythology, amethyst was rock crystal dyed purple by the tears of Dionysus, the god of wine and merriment. As such, ancient Romans and Greeks used to wear the amethyst stone while making drinking vessels, as they believed the stone could prevent intoxication. Throughout the ages, amethysts have also been used as a symbol of royalty – with some even decorating the British Crown Jewels. The amethyst was also a personal favourite gem of Queen Catherine the Great of Russia.

Amethyst also holds religious connotations. During the Middle Ages, the amethyst stone represented piety and celibacy, was used to adorn crosses, and was also worn by members of the Catholic clergy during church services. It was also considered one of the Cardinal gems in the Old World, in that it was one of the five gemstones that was considered precious above all other gemstones – that is, until large deposits were located in Brazil.

 

How Did Amethysts Become the Birthstone for February?

Aaron, also known as ‘Aaron the Priest’, was the brother of Moses. Aaron wore a special garment which had a crystal breast plate – for which Moses provided specific instructions regarding its design. There were twelve gemstones on the breastplate, one for each of the names of the sons of Israel. Despite some initial controversy, at the formation of the traditional calendar year, these twelve stones are today viewed as the definitive chart of astrological birthstones.

It is said that the amethyst is the stone of Saint Valentine, who was believed to wear an amethyst engraved with the figure of his assistant, Cupid, within it. This is believed to be a reason for the amethyst’s placement as February’s birthstone, as Valentine’s Day is traditionally celebrated in the month of February.

 

Types of Amethyst Stones

Amethyst stones appear in a variety of shapes and shades – ranging from light purple tints to gems that are nearly black. The most well-known types of amethyst are purple, pink, mossy, ametrine, cape and prasiolite.

Pink stones are considered the least valuable as they feature an extremely light and indistinct lavender hue. Mossy stones, on the other hand, can appear in both light and dark hues and have veins that are visible throughout the bead.

Cape amethyst stones feature hints of milky white quartz, whereas ametrine is one of the rarest gemstones and contains a mixture of yellow and purple hues in the single crystal – a feat that rarely occurs in nature.

Lastly, prasiolite quartz features a yellow-green hue with slight tinges of purple throughout.

 

What Jewellery Pieces Do Amethysts Go Best With?

The amethyst gem is durable enough for use in a variety of jewellery pieces, such as rings, earrings, bracelets, pendants and other types of jewellery. Plus, as there are enormous deposits of amethyst across the world, there is enough material to keep the gem’s price point low enough that most people can afford to purchase jewellery that contains it.

Amethyst jewellery has been consistently popular over time – particularly due to its elegant, sophisticated look. Generally, set in 925 sterling silver, gold or rose gold, there are plenty of options when it comes to purchasing amethyst jewellery.

Amethyst pendant jewellery is a great way to display the depth and complexity of the amethyst stone. Craftsmanship is key when it comes to amethyst pendants, so it pays to be picky when making your pendant selection to ensure you find the perfect cut, length and general display.

Amethyst bracelets are another popular jewellery type that perfectly display the gemstone’s beauty. As no two amethyst crystals are the same, an amethyst bracelet is an incredibly unique way to display the beauty accessible in unevenness.

Studs, drop earrings, and threader earrings are the most popular types of amethyst jewellery settings for earrings. And lastly, when it comes to rings, an amethyst is extremely effective alone as a statement stud. If searching for the perfect amethyst ring, don’t be afraid to go simple and let the amethyst stone shine through as the hero of the piece.

 

Whether it’s an amethyst necklace, pendant, earring, bracelet or engagement ring, look no further than the expert team at Perth’s Allgem Jewellers. Conveniently located in Hay Street Mall in the CBD, Allgem’s wide range of gemstone jewellery pieces, including a range of amethyst pieces, is sure to suit all design preferences. Contact our professional master jewellers or visit our showroom to take a look at our wide range of luxurious gemstone jewellery.